Blogging Like I've Never Blogged Before

Friday, October 29, 2004

I apologize for the following sports related post. Well, not really apologize, but you might get bored. But if you don't like it, then Hey, fuck you.

I just read a Red Sox fan describe their night, and it made me realize how fucking amazing it was when the Rangers won the Cup. It was ten years ago, and just reading this one piece slammed every memory that was buried in the back way up to the front.

About how you will always remember these guys. Every last one of them. Brian Noonan. Steve Larmer, who was one of the last guys interviewed the night they won... he was so drunk, holding a bottle of champagne during his interview, sporadically laughing at nothing. Fucking Nick Kypreos, the retard that he was. These are the guys.

Those moments during that last game. For the Rangers, it was different. It went seven games and was more climactic than this World Series (I suppose you could compare it to the Yankees/Red Sox series). It was down to the last faceoff with little more than one second to go. Messier pushing Pavel Bure away from the puck, Bure taking a huge two handed slash in the direction of Messier. He missed. If that was a regular season game, the Rangers would have beat the shit out of Bure. But they just won the Cup. Messier jumped. And he jumped. He jumped again. His stick flailing. The Rangers just won the Stanley Cup.

And then my favorite part. Madison Square Garden, all of the fans, even some players, who had heard people yelling "1940!" for so many years started their own chant.

Nineteen forty! Nineteen forty! Nineteen forty! Nineteen forty! Nineteen forty!

That chant never sounded so good. We took it back. Made it our own.

I remember every night during that playoff run going home and listening to Steve Somers on the FAN. I remember after one of the big wins -- I forget which -- he said, "This is one of those nights where you can't wait to read the paper tomorrow."

Never more true. I fucking love that line. Every day during that run, I read the paper. Every square inch that had anything to do with the Rangers. I couldn't wait.

Every game during those playoffs, I was in my friend Jay's basement, with the exception of two games. I was at those two games.

In the finals, game 5, where we thought we had it locked up, we lost. It was one of the most torturous games ever. They were down 3-0. All of the sudden, it was tied 3-3. Before we could finish yelling and jumping, we were losing 6-3. Cancel the parade. It ain't over yet.

The next game at Jay's, there were only three of us there. Usually, we had five. The other two guys decided to watch it somewhere else. The whole game didn't feel right. The Rangers lost. Game 7 came, and all five of us were back. That was one of the greatest nights of my life.

At one point, I thought that might be a pathetic kind of thought. Why should a hockey team mean that much to me? Then I read stuff that Boston fans are writing now and it all slaps me in the face.

I wouldn't mind living to be 104. Just as long as the Rangers win the 2079 Stanley Cup, and I can sit in my recliner happily chanting "Nineteen Ninety Four!"

Sports are fun. Except during lockouts.
All material © Mike Toole; 2003 - 2006